Date: 17th September 2007 at 9:15am
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Having been a real trailblazer at Bolton with his army of support staff, Big Sam has picked up the baton at Newcastle and taken it to even higher levels according to the man himself. Speaking about his horde of nutritionists, physios and computer nerds, he said:

‘We’ve got the best background team in the country. When I started down this route eight or nine years ago, people used to laugh at me. They used to say: ‘Look at that big, daft devil. What’s he doing that for?’ They tried to make a mockery of me. Now, I sit in this position as a very successful manager. My beliefs have been proven by results. What made me go down that route? Ground-breaking ideas. Ideas like a cryogenic therapy unit – we had the first one in the country at Bolton.

It promotes recovery after training. You can then train the players longer and harder than ever before. We were the first to get that sort of science in. You are only looking for one per cent or half a per cent to make players better. If you can give that player that bit more support then he is going to fight to give you that bit more back when he goes out onto the field. That is the fine line between winning and losing.’